Tag: North Korea

World Cup 2010: North Korea 0-3 Ivory Coast

I wonder if I’m the only one in the UK, without a vested interest in either side, who is watching this. To access this on the red button you have to bypass Portugal v Brazil. But this game promises goals. Not just because North Korea capitulated after they made their own substitutions, but because in winning, Ivory Coast need a nine goal swing, as well as a Portugal defeat in the other game. The Ivory Coast have one option, and one tactic. Go for it. 1. Brazil 2. Portugal 3 Ivory Coast 4. North Korea They come out of the blocks immediately, hoping to catch the North Koreans cold. Yaya Toure threads Kader Keita who bursts into the box. He doesn’t connect with it well, but stays on his feet at the keeper blocks then punches the ball to safety. Romaric tries a 40 yard free kick, which is accurate, and also relatively easy for the keeper to Ri Myong-Guk to gather. Gervinho tries a ball across the face of the goal, but he’s got no support and Ri Kwang-Chon clears for a corner. Gervinho is the best player in the build up. His cross to Didier Drogba is converted, but he’s spent the entire build up offside, and the Assistant correctly rules it out. Gervinho tries another speculative shot that Ri Myong-Guk saves, but a goal has been...

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World Cup 2010: Portugal 7 (SEVEN) North Korea 0

It was a transformation more complete than a Doctor Who regeneration. “North” Korea went from “well-organised, but more than that, they can play” just before half-time to “this lot” by the end of the BBC’s coverage, by-passing “plucky” completely. In fact, the transformation was quicker than that. In between Portugal’s second and fourth goals, seven minutes in total, Korea’s record in the run-up to these finals had changed from a series of good draws with 1-0 defeats against Paraguay and Mexico “who have done well here” to “no wins in six matches.” Stalinist revisionism at it’s most clinical. The Beeb haven’t stinted on the stereotyping with the Koreans, or at least the communist, totalitarian ones, especially regarding what will, or more to the point, won’t be shown of the Chollima’s games “in Pyongyang.” According to match commentator, Simon Brotherton, they “only showed highlights” of the Brazil game and not until seventeen hours later. And he adds, without a shred of evidence I’m sure, that they wouldn’t have shown a minute if Korea had lost heavily. Of course, this might well have been down to the cost of taking the coverage, which has been a stretch for better-resourced broadcasters. And only eventually did Brotherton explain that 17 hours after the game was actually “prime time” in Korea. But, you know, facts…good story etc… “Technically known as the Korean Democratic People’s...

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World Cup 2010: Brazil 2-1 North Korea

It’s easy to disguise ignorance with mockery, and so it seems with this evening’s intriguing match between Brazil and North Korea. Before the match, ITV treats us to as many cliches about North Korea as they can fit into thirty minutes to cover up the fact that very few us know anything particularly significant about them. A quick look at the AFC qualifying rounds, however, is telling. North Korea were seeded higher in qualifying than 2002 qualifiers China or the 2007 AFC Asian Cup winners Iraq. In the final round of the tortuously long AFC qualifying competition, they knocked out Asian qualifiers Saudi Arabia as well as Iran. In contrast with North Korea, everybody knows all about Brazil. Or, at least, they know all of the cliches about them. A cursory glance at the squad that Dunga brought to the finals (and, just as significantly, those that he left behind) confirms that this is a squad that has been sculpted to win the World Cup rather than to excite the senses of the purists. How, though, will they react to a team that they know almost nothing about? How do you prepare for such a match? Those predicting a record-breaking score for Brazil this evening are missing a trick. The value of Brazil’s stock could go down as well as up with this particular match, against opposition about whom...

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World Cup Tales: Boycott! When Africa & Asia Said “Enough”, 1966

In England at least, the 1966 World Cup finals have been mythologised. To an extent, they have started to become the footballing equivalent of Arthurian legend – a set of values of Englishness that we either subscribe to or not. This is a shame, because the 1966 World Cup was a fascinating tournament and some of the most notable stories have slipped under the collective radar because of the suffocating over-presence of that “Russian” linesman, Argentinians chasing the referee around the pitch and all the other micro-stories that make up the occasionally muddied and contradictory narrative of England’s eventual win in that tournament. Amongst these is the story of a dispute that didn’t only have a direct, tangible affect on the 1966 tournament itself, but would also go on to have long-term ramifications for the entire FIFA organisation. Egypt became the first African nation to attempt qualification for the World Cup, in 1934 and 1954. As the game’s appealed continued to grow, however, there was a growing clamour from African and Asian nations to be involved in the World Cup finals, and the Asian Football Confederation was founded in 1954, with the Confederation of African Football following in 1957. The early rules for African and Asian countries were stringent, to say the least. For the 1958 World Cup, twelve Asian and African teams entered, but a FIFA rule stating...

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The Monday Morning Links Emporium

After a week long hiatus, The Monday Links Emporium is back, and this morning we feature something that will probably make you spit coffee out of your nose, some bizarre goings on at Kettering, a potted history of the World Cup for beginners and The Football Club That Ate Essex™. Don’t forget, we are always interested in any links that you find for this “prestigious” column – if you find anything that you think we would be interested in, feel free to drop us a line by email or stick it in the comments section here. – The Sunderland forum “Ready To Go”, in the spirit of office time-wasters world-wide, started a thread on the subject of recreating great football moments using MS Paint. The results were simply tremendous, and now there is a video compilation on YouTube. Cracking stuff, which will make you snort coffee out of your nose. – In 1992, When Saturday Comes ran an article by someone that gave the newly-merged Dagenham & Redbridge “Five Years. And that’s being generous.” Eighteen years on, the Daggers were promoted into League One at the weekend. Regardless of concerns about how the club came into existence, it’s an achievement that can’t be denied. Kudos, also, to WSC for reprinting a prediction that turned out to be so hopelessly wrong. – We’re finally starting to find out a little...

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